50/50 Custody: Two Weeks Each and 2-2-5-5 Schedules
50/50 Physical Custody
50/50 joint physical custody means your child spends 50% of their time with you and 50% of their time with the other parent. This is becoming a more popular choice in child custody because it allows the child to be an active part of both parents lives. Also, depending on your state, if you have 50/50 custody you may not have to pay child support.
50/50 joint physical custody has some requirements to ensure its success.
· Both parents need to live close to each other, your child's school, and other activities.
· Both parents must show the court they are willing to work together for the benefit of their child, including being able to communicate with each other.
· Both parents must both have a stable home environment.
Under 50/50 physical custody there are many different choices in how you schedule your child's time with each parent. I am going to talk about two very different schedules so you can see the wide variety of options available to you.
Two Weeks Each
The two weeks each custody schedule is very simple to understand. Your child lives with you for two weeks and then the other parent for two weeks. This schedule is very popular and can work well because you child has more time at each home to adapt and be a part of the family.
Children who like structure and consistency tend to prefer this schedule. It is also very popular with teenagers.
The biggest downfall of this schedule is some children cannot handle being gone so long from each parent. You can have a dinner one night a week with the current non-custodial parent. By doing this, your child and you will be able to spend time together and catch up and anything new.
Below I have posted a visual calendar made on Custody X Change software of the two weeks each schedule. Time with the mother is represented in pink and the father in blue.
Two Weeks Each Schedule
This schedule is very different from the one above because the child goes back and forth multiple times a week. How the 2-2-5-5 custody schedule works is the child spends two weeknights with you and the next two week nights with the other parent. Then the child comes back to you for the three day weekend and the same two weekdays (this is where the 5 comes from) then spends the last two weekdays and three day weekend with the other parent.
This schedule was very confusing to me when I was first learning about it. However, it helped me to look at a calendar and see it in action. It is easier to understand if you know each parent has the same weeknights and then the weekends rotate back and forth.
This schedule is great because the child gets to spend time with each parent each week. Also there is a level of consistency during the week because each parent has the same weeknights. For example, if you child has karate every Tuesday, it is the same parent who is responsible for taking them each week.
The biggest downfall of this schedule is to make sure your child can handle all their responsibilities while going back and forth. You and the other parent will have to communicate frequently about school work, special events, and activities to make sure nothing is missed.
Below I have posted a visual calendar made on Custody X Change software of the 2-2-5-5 schedule. Time with the mother is represented in pink and the father in blue.